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Scenic Overlooks: 7 Homes with Private Balconies & Terraces

Private balconies and terraces ease the divide between the indoors and outside in these luxury homes

The balcony, the terrace, the veranda delimit that halfway place between the indoors and the outdoors—and the wild, infinite world beyond. Today’s luxury homes offer dazzling outdoor spaces, whether rooftop terraces or sweeping balconies, with beautiful views of the world’s great destinations. These private alfresco spaces have eye-catching architectural and landscape designs with every conceivable modern amenity, such as infinity pools and spas, luxurious lounge and dining areas, wet bars, summer kitchens, and fireplaces. From an elegant skyline penthouse poised above Les Invalides the City of Light to a tranquil lodge in the Blue Ridge Mountains, these homes capture some of the most sensational views on earth, whether city skyline, the mountains, or the sea.

Penthouse at Place Vauban in Paris, France

The great, glistening golden dome of the Hôtel National des Invalides is the star of this elegant, contemporary penthouse in Paris’s fashionable Rive Gauche. The residence is the centerpiece of a grand 1930s building on Place Vauban, opposite Les Invalides’ military museum and the tomb of Napoleon. Extending to nearly 1,500 square feet, the airy, light-filled living spaces blend elegant period details, such as high ceilings and Macassar ebony panelling with modernist interior decor by designer François Catroux. The reception areas include a grand reception room, drawing room, and formal dining space. The apartment has two terraces, the largest of which overlooks the formal gardens of Les Invalides and the structure itself, while a second, south-facing terrace offers a bird’s-eye view of the cityscape. The principal suite has a luxurious bathroom and dressing room. Other contemporary updates include a designer kitchen and smart-home automation. A ground-floor studio apartment and two cellars are further amenities.

Es Bosc in Ibiza, Spain

This sumptuous Moorish-inspired villa in Ibiza is a celebration of art, nature, and the senses. Perched on a clifftop with views of the Mediterranean Sea, the property encompasses more than five acres of resplendent grounds sheltered by native pine and juniper. A field of lavender at the entrance stretches to a magnificent infinity pool that seems to merge with the sea below. Built into the cliffs, the pool deck’s natural rock formations mirror the craggy inlets of the coastline. Just beyond is Es Cubells Bay and the neighboring island of Formentera. Cabanas grace the pool deck and stone terraces around the property. Fruit trees and vegetable gardens provide abundant fresh produce. The interiors evoke a Moorish palace, with carefully sourced antiques and handcrafted finishes of wood and stone. The great room is the centerpiece with its beautiful Mudéjar-style ceiling dome and violet-glass skylight. Other stylish appointments include a library, kitchen, and a main bedroom, one of six suites, with a Jacuzzi, sauna, and a terrace with another scenic vista of the sea.

Masterpiece Penthouse in Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Designed for art collectors, this magnificent penthouse atop the Dubai skyline is itself a work of art, offering a balcony with a view of the Dubai Water Canal and Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.

Volante is one of Dubai’s most prestigious addresses, and this magnificent waterfront penthouse delivers an ultra-luxurious lifestyle. The home’s sweeping balcony has a front-row panorama of the Dubai Water Canal and Downtown Dubai skyline, including the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building. The 5,039-square-foot open-concept interior was remodeled to showcase a world-class art collection with vast gallery walls and museum-quality lighting. The lavish living spaces are further enhanced with integrated and functional art furniture. Natural wood floors and a neutral palette impart a contemporary Scandinavian aesthetic. This theme carries into both bedrooms and their serene, spa-like bathrooms. There are two kitchens, including a hidden prep kitchen, which connects to the private staff quarters. Residents may also enjoy chef-prepared meals delivered to their table from The Club. The Spa at Volante is a wellness sanctuary with Zen treatment suites, sauna and steam rooms, and a TechnoGym fitness center. The Garden is a landscaped pool terrace overlooking the Dubai Water Canal. Rounding out Volante’s luxury amenities is The Lounge, a multifunctional zone with a coffee bar, conference room, and cinema.

This splendid residence is in Parc Saint Roman, a distinguished development close to the iconic Casino de Monte-Carlo, the Monte-Carlo Beach hotel, the M.C.C.C. country club, and fine shops and restaurants. The sleek, three-bedroom, three-bathroom residence is on a high floor of the building, offering panoramic vistas from Cap Martin to Cap Ferrat. The home was renovated in contemporary style with airy, open-plan rooms opening to private terraces, increasing the natural light and allowing for indoor-outdoor living. The veranda, with its adjustable slats for shade of sunlight, enhances alfresco mealtimes or moments of relaxation. The large, open-plan kitchen has top-of-the-line appliances and includes a glass-enclosed, temperature-controlled wine cellar. The owners’ suite has a lavish en suite bathroom with soaking tub, shower, hammam, and its own spectacular sea view. This exceptional residence also includes two cellars and seven parking spaces and access to Parc Saint Roman’s leafy gardens and pool terrace.

Point of View Estate in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands

This tropical villa in St. Thomas opens to a pool terrace surrounded by lush gardens and a vista of Cowpet Bay. Beyond are the calm, azure waters of the Caribbean Sea.

This contemporary home has a private setting in Water Point, an exclusive gated community on the east end of St. Thomas between Cowpet and Great Bay. The expansive interiors open to a huge pool terrace surrounded by lush, tropical gardens and sweeping vistas of Cowpet Bay and the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea. The great room anchors the living spaces with its rich wood finishes, tiled floor, and walls of windows to frame the views. Farther along are an office, sitting room, and modern chef’s kitchen with a breakfast bar and doors to a garden terrace. Six bedrooms and six luxurious bathrooms provide ample accommodation for guests and staff. The primary suite has a beamed cathedral ceiling, wraparound windows, and access to a terrace. Owners have access to Water Point’s 40-acre parklike grounds, which include a private dock, tennis court, and entertainment pavilion at the water’s edge.

Elegant Mountain Retreat in Sylva, North Carolina

This lodge-style mountain home has a picturesque setting in the Balsam Mountain Preserve in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. The  wood and stone façade encloses nearly 6,000 square feet of elegantly appointed interiors with rustic timber beams and flagstone fireplaces. The heart of the home is a two-story great room with floor-to-ceiling windows and a flagstone fireplace. Just beyond is a cozy, hearth-warmed terrace with a jaw-dropping view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The great room also opens to a beautiful farmhouse kitchen with a LaCanche range, two ovens, Sub-Zero refrigerator, and quartz island. There are three bedrooms, including a main-level owners’ suite, as well as an office, library, media lounge, and a HydroWorx therapy pool with a view of the mountains. The rambling, 2.17-acre grounds offer fire-warmed patios, an alfresco dining terrace, and wooded walks. Owners can also join the nearby country club, where a championship Arnold Palmer Signature golf course, equestrian facilities, and hiking trails await.

Contemporary Sea-View Villa in Port d’Andratx, Mallorca, Spain

Set on a hillside in Cala Llamp, an idyllic bay near Port d’Andratx on the southwestern tip of Mallorca, this newly built villa has been designed with chic modern comfort in mind. To frame spectacular sunsets and sea as far as neighboring Ibiza, the primary living space and pool terrace occupy the upper level. There, the open-plan living and dining room features wraparound, floor-to-ceiling sliding windows that open on three sides. A further side terrace with elaborate wooden detailing creates an alfresco dining space. On the lower floor are two sumptuous primary bedroom suites; the ground-level floor offers three additional bedrooms, a fitness area, and a wine cellar. An elevator serves all floors, including the underground six-car garage. Outside the home, dazzling light installations and attractive plantings provide a final flourish, creating a magical ambience when night falls.